It is one of the largest banks in the UK, can trace its roots back to the 17th century, has sites across the world and has now come to the Algarve. Barclays Bank recently opened a branch in Almancil following the successful opening of one in Vilamoura earlier this year. With further plans in place to open a branch in Lagoa later in the year, it is safe to say that the eagle has certainly landed!
The team of welcoming faces which make up the staff at the Almancil Barclays are – Ana Sacramento (Commercial Assistant), Gisela Braz (Personal Banker), Nuno Duarte (account manager), Henrique Rocha (Deputy manager), Pedro Melo (Bank Manager) and Sr. Miguel Gomes (Director of Commercial Co-ordination). The bank has been designed to make customers feel welcome, and the layout, with comfortable chairs, is intended to put clients at ease when disscussing their personal finance on a one-to-one basis. The staff can also offer a full banking service – either commercial or personal – in English.
Engº Rui Guerreiro was the first customer through the door last week. He had already arranged his account before the branch opened and commented that he was very “happy with the bank’s ability to manage assets effectively”.
Pedro Melo joined Barclays from the BPN bank in Quinta do Lago where he was the Branch Manager for three years. “During the construction of the new branch,” he commented “we must have had 10 to 12 people of different nationalities knocking on the door each day. They were all excited about the impending arrival of the new Barclays branch and were trying to open bank accounts before the bank was even properly open. Of course we obliged.” Melo went on to express his personal excitement in being involved with a global bank of this scale: “This is the third time I have been the Manager of a newly opened branch, so the opening is nothing new to me. However I am excited that this time it is Barclays.”
Keep reading The Resident for an exclusive look at the newly opened Vilamoura branch and an interview with Bank Manager, Valter Brás.